I had a full day today of doing ecotours for two school groups. This is kind of a part time job in which I get to talk to school groups about beach and marsh ecology and the critters that live in those habitats. It isn't about the pay but just the fun of being outside at one of my favorite islands and talking about marine science.
I have been a researcher all my career. I have taught graduate school courses and had graduate students that I mentored. So dealing with middle and high school groups is a new thing for me.
I enjoy the interaction with most of the kids. The middle school groups are the most interesting. The younger grades are really into the whole experience for the most part. I had two groups of 50+ middle schoolers today. They were filled with questions, excited to be on the beach and interested in talking about what they found.
One of the teachers told me that some of these kids had never been to the ocean before and some had never been out of their home city. That made me feel a lot of gratitude for being able to be part of such an exciting experience for them. Can you imagine that some were seeing the ocean for the first time? What a powerful thing to be part of!
So I have had a full day. I am grateful to be off my feet now and not having to walk another mile today. But most importantly, I am grateful for having an opportunity to experience the wonderment of these children.
There is so much wonder in this world if we stop to see. And the things that I may take for granted because they are familiar can be a source of great inspiration for those who are seeing them for the first time. I am glad to be reminded today that I can see things with fresh eyes, sometimes blurred with tears of gratitude and renewed hope for mankind.